Covid infections in Wales rise for fifth week in a row
Covid infections in Wales have increased for the fifth successive week, according to the latest figures published by the Office for National Statistics
The weekly infection survey for the seven days ending 30 June, estimated 149,700 people had Covid, an increase of over 40% from the previous week, equating to 4.93% of the population or around 1 in 20 people.
On Wednesday the Chief Medical Officer for Wales, Sir Frank Atherton had urged people to continue to take measure to protect themselves from the virus as cases continue to surge fuelled by omicron subtypes BA.4 and BA.5.
BA.5 is now the dominant form of coronavirus across Wales.
The weekly survey released last Friday reported a 55% increase in the number of infections in Wales.
Health Minister Eluned Morgan also confirmed the increase in cases in the community has led to an increase in the number of people being admitted to and treated in hospital for Covid-19.
The latest available information shows there are now more than 960 Covid-19-related patients in Welsh hospitals and there has also been an increase in the number of people with Covid-19 being treated in critical care.
A large number of NHS staff are currently off work because they have Covid-19.
In a written statement, the minister said: “The NHS has been working incredibly hard to provide planned care for people across Wales and to reduce waiting times, which had built up over the course of the pandemic.
“This task becomes more difficult when pandemic pressures increase.
“Some hospitals have taken the difficult decision to restrict visiting to prevent coronavirus from spreading among patients and staff; others are asking all visitors to wear face coverings.
“We are not making face coverings mandatory in health and care settings , but I would encourage everyone to wear one if they are visiting a healthcare setting and I would also ask people to consider wearing a face covering in crowded indoor public places, while cases of coronavirus are currently high.”
Covid-19 remains most prevalent in Scotland, where 312,800 people were estimated to have had the virus in the week to June 30, or around one in 17.
This is up from 288,200, or one in 18, and is the highest estimate for Scotland since early April.
Infections in Scotland have increased at a slower rate compared to other UK nations, the ONS said.
In England, 2.2 million people were likely to have had the virus last week, the equivalent of around one in 25.
This is up from 1.8 million, or one in 30, the previous week.
In Northern Ireland, infections have increased to an estimated 98,400 people, or one in 19, up from 71,000, or one in 25.
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